SIOUX CENTER, Iowa – With the number-four seed in the upcoming Great Plains Athletic Conference Tournament at stake, Midland University was able to earn a tough five-set match at Dordt University on Wednesday night (18-25,26-24,26-24,18-25,15-7). The Warriors, who had dropped five conference five-set matches coming in, were able to take the upper hand early to win and earn the right to host the rematch on Saturday night.
“I am really proud of the girls tonight for how they hung in there against a really good Dordt team,” said head coach Paul Giesselmann after the match. “Tonight was all about playing with mental toughness and a turning point was finding a way to win game two. We’ve had so many five gamers this year that we came up short, but tonight on the road the girls only made one error in the final game.”
After dropping the opening set 25-18, Midland fought back from a 23-21 deficit to win the match 26-24. They had a stretch of three straight point thanks to a kill by Taylor Petersen sandwiched in between a pair of Defender errors. Then after Dordt tied the game at 24-24, another error by the home team put Midland at set-point and Brooke Fredrickson sent the teams to the locker rooms tied 1-1.
Out of the set-break Midland jumped out to a 7-4 lead and then extended it to 21-16. Dordt would battle back and tie the game at 24-24 again before Fredrickson and Sydney Morehouse hit back-to-back kills to win the third game and take a 2-1 lead in the match.
Dordt would use a fast start of their own, going up 7-3, in the fourth set to tie the match at 2-2. That set up winner take all five set.
In the fifth the two teams went back and forth to begin, trading points on the way to a 4-4 tie. Then Midland caught fire as they went on a 7-0 run to take a stranglehold on the match. The Warriors would finish the set and match with a block by Bailey Schindler to give them a 15-7 set win and a 3-2 match victory.
Defensively Fredrickson lead the team with 20 digs on the night. Taliyah Flores had 19 and Leimbach had 10 to join her in double-figures.
Midland finishes the regular season on a two-match win streak and are now 18-9 overall and 10-6 in the GPAC. Dordt closes out the regular season with a tough home loss and are now 18-10 overall and 9-7 in conference play.
The Warriors and Defenders will meet up once again this upcoming weekend as the GPAC Postseason Tournament begins. The two teams will compete in the quarterfinal round on Saturday, November 9. First serve is set for 7:00 p.m. inside Wikert Event Center.